Dumfries & Galloway Health & Social Care


Acorn House is based at:

Kingholm Road,

Tel: 01387 251325

Acorn House - Short Breaks Respite Services

Who the service is aimed at

Children and young people under the age of 18 with neurodiversity/ learning disabilities and associated complex needs; including health needs.

Support provided

Acorn House provides “home from home” respite and short breaks for Children and young people. NHS specialist staff support service users and families with a diverse range of needs, ensuring an individualised and holistic approach.
Bedrooms and bathrooms are equipped with a range of specialist moving and handling equipment.
The unit has a sensory room and ample room for break away space with various sensory and play equipment throughout. The unit has a large fully accessible garden.
Service users can access a range of outings during short breaks and can enjoy valuable time spent with their peers.
Specialist NHS staff provide wrap around care and support for service users and their families to allow parents and carers regular breaks and rest from intensive care responsibilities. Families build up a short breaks package that best meets their needs, with flexibility of choice surrounding bookings.
Partnership working with our colleagues from third sector organisations, education, social work, medical teams and Allied health professionals helps to ensure care is individualised and continuously reviewed to improve outcomes for service users and their families.

Age range: Children and young people of any age under 18.
Area covered: All Dumfries and Galloway

Can an individual access the service directly, or do they need to be referred to it by another service – like a school, social worker, health practitioner for example? 

Individuals would not access the service directly. Referrals are made by a children’s or young person’s allocated Social Worker.

Referral Information

Referrals are made via a special referral form via a child’s allocated social worker to the Contract and Commissioning Officer at Dumfries and Galloway Council.

Referrals are then assessed at a quarterly resource panel and suitable referrals are invited to the unit for a pre-assessment visit before building up short visits at the family and child’s pace with progression to overnight respite breaks.

Start-off respite package following introduction visits is 29 overnights per annum, with requests for increases submitted via the same social work referral to the quarterly panel.

Top tips for making a ‘good’ referral (if applicable): Within the social work referral, as much detail as possible re the child/ young person’s needs and diagnosis is helpful.

What needs to be in place before a referral is accepted (for example a Child’s Plan)?  An allocated Social Worker to submit the referral.

Is there a charge/fee for this service?  No

If there is a charge/fee, is there funding available for this? D&G Health and Social Care Partnership